After Nangaku’s comment about Sekito, he once more sent the attendant monk to Sekito to ask him a question. On arrival, the monk asked Sekito, “What is liberation?”
Sekito said, “Who bound you?”
The monk asked, “What is the pure land?”
Sekito responded, “Who made you dirty?”
The monk asked, “What is nirvana?”
“Who gave you birth and death?” Sekito replied.
The attendant monk came back to Nangaku and reported Sekito’s answers. Nangaku put both hands together and made a gesture of touching his feet.
At that time, Kengo, Ran and Nangaku were thought to be the three masters in the country, and all three of them said, “From the stone-head comes the lion’s roar to my ear.”
The monk went back to Sekito and said that, if there were anything the monk could do for him, to let him know. A little later, the master, Nangaku, came with his monks to see Sekito. Sekito stood up to receive him, and the two greeted each other. Later, Nangaku had a temple built for Sekito’s convenience.
Friends, first the questions.
The first question:
Is it not the same to call existence intelligent and loving as to call it God? It might not be the Christian concept of God but there are other pantheistic concepts which see God in everything.
It is not the same. God gives a sense of personality, of limitedness, while existence gives you an unlimited, non-personal vastness. God cannot be equivalent to existence. And God has always been conceived by all religions, monotheistic or polytheistic, as the creator of existence, and existence is not a created phenomenon; it has been here always.
So first this God gives you an impression that he is the creator. Then many lies start arising out of this God. Then prayer becomes possible, then worship becomes possible, then statues of God become possible. Then temples and churches and mosques start arising. Then organized religions become possible. God is the center of all organized religions.
Once you accept God as a person, you have limited intelligence, invested intelligence, in one person. I am spreading it all over existence. The whole existence is intelligent, caring, compassionate, loving, but it is not a person. It is not limited in any way; it is unlimited, infinite and eternal. There is no beginning, no end. It is continuously evolving towards higher and yet higher peaks; it is continuously fathoming depths beyond depths. There are skies beyond skies; there is no end to existence, it has no boundary.
God is bound to be limited. And God is a fiction of the human mind, existence is not. You have created God in your own image. He is just sitting on a throne, an old man of course – you cannot conceive of God as young or a child – with a long beard. The beard must be longer than God himself. Since eternity he has never entered a barber’s salon and I don’t think that he has safety razors. Every morning in the bathroom… I don’t think that he has a bathroom either, because there is no mention of his bathroom in any scripture. He seems to be perfectly Indian. So beware of him! He must be using the whole sky as his toilet. When something falls on your head, it is holy shit. Conceiving God as a person is going to create many troubles.